Medical Sciences Internal Fund: Bridging salary
The Medical Sciences Internal Fund Bridging Salary Scheme provides short-term awards to cover the salary costs of research staff at postdoctoral and early career researcher levels, who are currently funded on external research grants, while they seek long-term support, also from external sources.
It is essential that applicants read the FAQs before applying to this fund.
The Bridging Salary Scheme provides funding to support the salary of postdocs and early career (junior) researchers between external grants. Other externally funded research staff with specialist knowledge (e.g. clinical trials staff at grade 7 or 8) may also be supported. Applicants may check the likely eligibility of the recipient for bridging funding before applying by submitting their CV to the Research Funding team.
As of November 2019, Departments are expected to demonstrate a strong commitment to the staff member being bridged by committing a minimum of 50% of the total cost of the bridging salary period from their internal sources. If a Department finds they are unable to do this, an explanation must be provided in the application form.
This bridging support will normally be for a maximum of three months (FTE). Longer periods of support may be considered in exceptional circumstances. Bridging salary for part-time staff will be funded at the relevant FTE. It is accepted that researchers may have to wait considerable lengths of time after submission until the start date of any external research grant awarded.
Reflecting the intention to support postdoctoral and early career researchers, awards are capped at a maximum of £18,025 (3 months employer cost at Grade 8.10).
The Medical Sciences Internal Fund Bridging Salary Scheme will normally fund contributions to the total employer cost of salaries only, and will not fund consumables or other non-staff research costs under this scheme.
Bridging support applications can only be submitted to the Medical Sciences Internal Fund on or after the date on which external funding applications for long-term salary support are submitted.
To be eligible to apply researchers must be a current employee who is externally-funded and bridging to another external grant.
Researchers must not be:
- bridging from startup packages regardless of funding source
- bridging to non-medical research e.g. BBSRC or Leverhulme funding
- bridging from or to internally held grants
It is essential that applicants read the FAQs before applying to this fund.
Please submit your application online via the Internal Research Award Management System (IRAMS).
Guidance on IRAMS in the form of quick reference guide (QRG) documents for applicants, departmental approvers and administrators can be found on Research Support pages.
Applications must be reviewed online for eligibility and departmental support by departmental approvers and, where approved, submitted to the Committee for review.
To demonstrate that applications have been submitted for external research grants, applications for bridging salary support must include the front page and the scientific and lay summaries of the external grant application(s) that have been submitted. These must be combined with your case for support and uploaded on IRAMS as a single PDF. A full copy of the grant application or a lengthy outline of the science is not required.
If an extension of awarded Medical Sciences Internal Fund bridging support is required due to delays in the start of anticipated external funding then a new application will need to be submitted to the next available round of the Medical Sciences Internal Fund.
For all enquiries please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Does the Department need to provide matching funds?
Yes. As of November 2019, Departments are expected to demonstrate a strong commitment to the staff member being bridged by committing a minimum of 50% of the total cost of the bridging salary period from their internal sources. If a Department finds they are unable to do this, an explanation must be provided in the application form.
I work in a pre-clinical department. Can I apply to the Medical Sciences Internal Fund?
Applicants from all departments in the Medical Sciences Division are eligible to apply. However, the Medical Sciences Internal Fund regulations state that the fund is to "promote work in the field of medical research". Please bear this in mind as you frame your application.
What type of research qualifies for Medical Sciences Internal Fund funding?
The Medical Sciences Internal Fund supports medical research. Medical research is that which is likely to fall under the remit of funding bodies such as the MRC, NIHR and medical research charities. Research that would fall under the remit of the BBSRC or Leverhulme Trust is not normally considered medical research.
Will you accept retrospective applications?
No. Awards will only be made with start dates that fall after 6 weeks from when the application is submitted.
Who should be named as the applicant?
The applicant should be the principal investigator. In the case of bridging funds and maternity cover for a postdoctoral researcher, the applicant should be the supervisor.
Can I apply for bridging funding to support a researcher who is not involved in medical research?
No, the Medical Sciences Internal Fund supports medical research. Therefore applications can only be made to support researchers who are currently working on medical research.
We haven’t submitted our external funding application yet, can we apply for bridging support before we submit it?
No. You can only put in an application for bridging support on or after the date that the external funding application has been submitted.
For a bridging salary application, should I attach copies of my grant applications?
Please only include the front page or lay summary of grant applications in progress. Do not attach the full applications.
Can I apply for 3 months salary support to fund the cost of covering my research assistant while they take family leave?
No. The Medical Sciences Internal Fund will only support this type of cover for PIs. The MRF will provide 3 months salary support to contribute to the cost of leave for other research staff.
My post-doc works part-time, CAN I APPLY for longer than 3 months of support at less than 1.0 FTe?
Yes. The total application amount cannot be greater than the value of 3 months at 1.0 FTE, but you can apply for a longer period of time at a lower FTE up to the same value.
MY POST-DOC is supported by several different external grants and one of these is ending. can i apply for just this portion of their salary to be bridged?
Yes. For example a member of staff is paid 0.5 FTE from Grant A which is ongoing, and 0.5 FTE from Grant B which is ending. You can apply for 0.5 FTE of bridging salary support to cover the grant which is ending.
The start of funding for my next grant has been delayed, can I apply for an extension of bridging funding?
If an extension of awarded Medical Sciences Internal Fund bridging support is required you will need to submit an application for this to the next available round of the Medical Sciences Internal Fund explaining why an extension is needed.
What costs can I include for bridging support?
You can include the total employer costs inclusive of any agreed pay increments.
What is the maximum bridging support for which I can apply?
Reflecting the intention to support postdoctoral and early career researchers up to Grade 8, awards are capped at a maximum of £17,230 (3 months employer cost of Grade 8.10).
Should I send you multiple files?
No. Please submit the relevant application form and any required appendices together in a single PDF.
Can I ask for funding to support my research student?
No. The Medical Sciences Internal Fund does not provide funding for research students.
Should I include the FEC costs of the research?
No. The Medical Sciences Internal Fund only provides funding for direct costs.
Can I apply to support the salary of more than one postdoc in a round?
Yes. Please submit separate application forms for each person.
The researcher I am seeking bridging support for is not currently supported on an external grant, can I apply to the Medical Sciences Internal Fund?
No, the Medical Sciences Internal Fund is only able to provide bridging between external research grants.
The researcher in need of bridging support is currently supported on an external grant but will be supported by departmental funds/an internal funding scheme in future, can I apply to the Medical Sciences Internal Fund?
No, the Medical Sciences Internal Fund is only able to provide bridging between external research grants. Block grants made to the University or Division from external agencies are generally not considered to be equivalent to external funding. Allocations from these block grants including the John Fell Fund, BRC, MRC CiC, Wellcome ISSF, etc, therefore do not fulfil the eligibility requirement for external funding source